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Archaeologists have uncovered more than 100 ancient inscriptions carved into rock at Wadi el-Hudi, where the ancient Egyptians mined amethyst.
In addition to the carved-rock inscription, the researchers also found 14 stele (inscriptions carved on a stone slab or pillar) and 45 ostraca (inscriptions written on pieces of pottery).
Amethyst - Egypt - Middle - Kingdom - Time
Amethyst became widely popular in Egypt during the Middle Kingdom, a time when the pharaohs of Egypt learned that Wadi el-Hudi is a good source for the material. "Once the [pharaohs] found it, they kind of went bonkers to go get it," Kate Liszka, the director of the Wadi el-Hudi expedition, told Live Science. During the Middle Kingdom, "they were bringing it back and making it into jewelry and doling it out to their elite and their princesses."
Though Wadi el-Hudi was surveyed in the past by other scholars, little excavation has been done and the surveys missed many inscriptions. "The site is just so full of inscriptions behind every boulder and around every wall that they missed a lot of them" Liszka said.
Team - Modeling - Reflectance - Transformation - Imaging
The team is using 3D modeling, reflectance transformation imaging (RTI) and photogrammetry, among other techniques, to help find new inscriptions, map archaeological remains and reanalyze inscriptions discovered by scholars who surveyed Wadi el-Hudi in the past. This work has taken on a greater urgency as modern-day gold mines have opened in the area, causing damage to archaeological remains.
The team is hoping that the inscriptions, along with other discoveries made during the excavations, will shed light on the many mysteries surrounding Wadi el-Hudi.
Inscriptions - Researchers - Wadi - El-Hudi
One of more than 100 inscriptions that were recently discovered by researchers at Wadi el-Hudi.
For instance, it's not clear if the miners were working at the site of...
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